HTC has become a bit player in the smartphone space in recent years, but the company is trying to carve out an unusual niche for itself by releasing a series of blockchain phones.

Last year’s HTC Exodus 1 is a $699 smartphone that can double as a cryptocurrency wallet and function as a full node.

If you can’t justify spending that much on a phone just because of its blockchain-related features, soon there will be a much cheaper option: the HTC Exodus 1S is coming soon for less than $250.

HTC first announced plans for its cheaper Bitcoin device earlier this year, and now the company has provided more details about the specs and features.

Like the pricier model, the new smartphone features the HTC Zion Wallet which lets you use Bitcoin, Ether, and several other cryptocurrencies. Since the phone can function as a node, it can perform on-device validation of Bitcoin transactions, while also extending the network.

With the aid of a 400GB or larger microSD card, you can also store the complete Bitcoin ledger on the phone itself.

But once you move beyond the blockchain features, the Exodus 1S is a pretty basic mid-range phone (although mid-range phones these days have some features that used to be exclusive to flagships just a few years ago).

It packs a 5.7 inch, HD+ display with an 18:9 aspect ratio, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, a 3,075 mAh battery, and 13MP front and rear cameras.

The HTC Exodus 1S isn’t available for purchase yet, but according to Engadget, it’s set to go on sale in Europe soon for €219, or about $245. It should also be available soon in other regions including Taiwan and select countries in the Middle East.

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8 replies on “HTC reveals specs for its cheap blockchain phone”

  1. I still find it at least somewhat interesting because it’s small (for 2019), has actual square corners on the screen, has a headphone jack (you can just make out the hole on the back view) and a back made of something other than glass. The idea of trying to get out of The System is appealing too.
    But I feel like I’m supposed to bash it for not being powerful enough for 2019, not having a good enough camera for 2019, and probably not being AMOLED enough for 2019. And all that aside, the idea that you can escape The System, at least with android, is an outright lie.

    1. As soon as we confuse a specification or a technology for “meets X need” then we have fallen into the marketeer’s trap. There’s always another millimeter of screen size or case thinn-ness, another nit of brightness and 1000x dynamic range in HDR display mode. “Do things look nice? Can I read with a dim light? Will it fit in my pocket?”

  2. I’m going to guess the market for a cryptocurrency phone that can independently process transactions (HTC recommends only doing so while plugged in BTW) is probably smaller than just making a modern horizontal QWERTY slider. Or they could have just made this even cheaper by not having the crypto stuff and sell it as a very decent budget phone.

    I wonder how HTC still has money to operate their smartphone business with consecutive flops for years now. I doubt their AR/VR division is making much revenue either.

    1. It’s sad how much they have fallen. At this point, I am just waiting for them to go out of business, it will be one less player in the already fragmented VR space.

      1. Agreed. I had a couple of their phones and loved them. I don’t understand how they went so wrong. I wish they would try building solid mid-range phones with features that other manufacturers have abandoned. A $250 – 300 phone with a mid grade processor, headphone jack, microSD card slot, 3,000 – 4,000 mAh battery, 4-6 GB RAM, and Android One would probably sell well. Sure, there are a bunch of mid grade phones out there but many are missing features or are from lesser known companies.

        1. BQ ticks all your boxes. You are right, it’s a lesser known brand. At least it’s aimed at the European market.

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